SUNDAY marked 16 years since more than 20,000 fans Southend United headed to the Millennium Stadium for the final of the LDV Vans Trophy final.

Steve Tilson's side memorably saw off Colchester United in a two legged semi-final to secure their place in Cardiff.

But the Shrimpers were seen off 2-0 by Blackpool in the final. 

Goals from John Murphy on two minutes and Danny Coid on 55 minutes left Blues without the silverware.

It was the first time Southend had made it through to a final in their 98-year-history.

Blues nearly pulled a goal back through Mark Gower's free-kick but it was not to be.

Leon Constantine and Kevin Maher also tested Blackpool keeper Lee Jones but he was equal to the task to maintain a clean sheet for the Lancashire side.


I was on tour. Played in Bath the night before and Exeter the night of the final. Convinced a friend from Bristol to put me up after Bath, drive to Cardiff, and then drive me to Exeter for soundcheck. Had to leave right on 90 minutes! I cried when I saw them on the big screen.


I remember catching my breath the first second I got to the top of the stairs and caught sight of the pitch. Never thought I'd see Southend play in a stadium like that. Shame the early goal really took the stuffing out of us.


Working a nightshift taking no lunch break so could leave at 6am to make coach departure then going back to work again at 11pm after a disappointing defeat. All for the cause of being a Shrimper.


Took my 7 year old twins! Great day out. Che looked overwhelmed all game I’m afraid.


What a day. I've got pictures somewhere but the old style printed type of pictures


I became a mum for the first time this weekend in 2004 and remember listening to the game on the radio in Southend hospital.